From Sarah R. Ingber, Davy Andrews, and SABR member Roger Cormier at Baseball Prospectus on April 2, 2020:
Chattanooga Lookouts team president Joe Engel once traded his shortstop for a 25-pound turkey, then served it to 25 sportswriters. He challenged Dizzy Dean to a fight. Twice. One year he hung 50 canary cages in the grandstands, hoping 50 singing canaries could convince fans to stop booing the then crummy squad, or at least drown them out. A personal orchestra accompanied him on trips.
He once sent the head of the league a photo of his players wearing dark glasses and carrying canes and tin cups, with a caption confirming the message of the picture was essentially Your umpires are not blessed with the sense of sight..
One umpire unexpectedly appeared in the stands to take in a Lookouts game one day. He explained to Engel his assigned game in Knoxville was postponed. Engel had the kid manually updating the stadium scoreboard give fake updates from Knoxville as if the game was actually being played. The umpire, per The Sporting News, “went nuts.”
Read the full article here: https://www.baseballprospectus.com/news/article/57993/too-far-from-town-chattanooga-lookouts/
- Related link: Read our SABR biography of Joe Engel, by Warren Corbett
Originally published: April 2, 2020. Last Updated: April 2, 2020.